Some people are proudly related to famous relatives who lived long ago. Patty Sanguily is related to one of the most famous trees in Texas, the great Columbus Oak. Unlike distant, deceased family members, the tree is fairing quite well, considering it’s been gracing the rolling plains of East Texas for over 500 years old. The great tree covers an extensive area on the land once owned by her grandfather, Fenton William Schweke. I met her entirely by chance at a Living Witness book signing at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin. She just happened to be visiting the gift shop, and was surprised to see a poster of the tree she grew up with standing before her on an easel.
Like all people who feel a kinship with our arboreal friends, she describes the great tree like a family member. She was kind enough to purchase a copy of the book for her brother who lives out-of-state, so he can enjoy the memory of the happy home her grandfather created in the shadow of one of the most famous trees in Texas.
- Patty Sanguily. Her grandfather owned the land where the Columbus Oak stands.